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					British Journal of Ophthalmology, 1987, 71, 746-747



 Serious eye injury in badminton players
S P KELLY
From the Department of Ophthalmology, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester LE] 5WW

 SUMMARY     Serious eye injury can occur in badminton players and may become more frequent. The
causes  and nature of such injuries in this sport in six patients are discussed. All were playing
competitive doubles matches. Penetrating eye injury due to a shattered glass spectacle lens
occurred. Players should be advised not to wear spectacles with glass lenses. Ocular protection in
this sport is desirable, and the forward player should hold the racket in front of the face.




The ophthalmologist's role in reporting the hazards              servatively. All were experienced players, playing
to the eye in various sports is increasingly important.'         doubles at a competitive level. Only case 1 wore
Ocular injuries in ice hockey and squash have                    spectacles. All had at least 6/6 Snellen corrected
generated a considerable literature and preventive               vision in the uninvolved eye.
measures have been advised in those games." Eye
injuries in badminton have been reported by                      Table 1 Clinical details ofpatients
Chandran in Malaysia,"7 with a peak during the 1970
Thomas Cup. Blonstein,8 who has been associated                                                                           Most
                                                                 Case Age,sex Eye Injury                                  recent VA
with squash and badminton sports medicine since
1946, reported that 'on the whole serious eye injuries           1     35    M    L   Corneoscleral perforation, uveal    6/9
are extremely rare in badminton'.                                                       prolapse, glass intraocular FB
                                                                 2     61 F       L   Hyphaema, sphincter pupillae tear   6/9
   Six serious eye injuries from badminton play are              3     20 F       R   Retinal dialysis and detachment     6/9
reported here in the hope of encouraging better                  4     16 M       R   Hyphaema, choroidal rupture         CF
ocular protection in this popular sport.                                                involving macula
                                                                 5     30    M    R   Angle recession glaucoma,           LP
                                                                                        vitreous haemorrhage
Subjects and methods                                             6     56 M       R   Hyphaema, angle recession           6/9
                                                                                        glaucoma, optic atrophy
Six patients with eye injuries from playing badminton
were examined by the author at the Leicester Royal               FB=foreign body. CF=counting fingers at 0-3 m. LP=perception
Infirmary. All were local amateur players. One other             of light only.
patient, who sustained aninjury in India from a                  Table 2 Sports injury details
shuttlecock causing retinal detachment, is not
included, though he was treated in this hospital. Four                                                           No ofyears playing
patients sustained their injuries in 1985 and were seen          Case Injury                                     badminton
in the acute phase. Case 3 sustained injury in 1982,             1     Partner's racket broke player's glass     30
case 6 in 1979; both stilLrequire outpatient treatment.                  spectacles
                                                                 2     Hit by opponent's shuttlecock, smash      40
Results                                                                  stroke at net
                                                                 3     Hit by opponent's shuttlecock, smash       6
                                                                         stroke at net
Table 1 gives the age, sex, nature of ocular injury,             4     Hit by opponent's shuttlecock, smash       5
and most recent visual acuity. Table 2 records the                       stroke at net
details of play when injury occurred. Three patients             5     Hit by partner's shuttlecock, smash       12
needed surgery; the others have been treated con-                        stroke while turning to face him
                                                                 6     Hit by opponent's shuttlecock, smash      20
                                                                         stroke at net
Correspondence to Mr S P Kelly, FRCSEd, Manchester Royal Eye
Hospital, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9WH.                       All players were playing competitive doubles matches.
                                                           746
Serious eye injury in badminton players                                                                                747

Discussion                                             ratio, it is probable that more cases of serious eye
                                                       injury will occur in this sport. This small cluster of six
Badminton results in few injuries, mostly minor, such serious eye injuries in this hospital from badminton
as cramps, blisters, and sprains.9 Only 6% of all may signify a trend if players continue to play without
injuries are due to the shuttlecock and 7% to the protecting their eyes.
racket.9 These rarer direct injuries are often to the     Vinger recommends that all racket players wear
eye and may be severe, as shown in this series. eye protection and describes the appropriate pro-
Serious ocular injury is recognised in ice hockey,2 ducts available.' Uniocular players should be especi-
squash rackets," tennis," and golf," but no previous ally mindful of this advice. In addition, prescribers of
report of perforating eye injury in badminton was spectacles should advise badminton players to wear
found in the literature. Badminton is a very popular toughened plastic lenses in sturdy spectacle frames.
sport and often played in schools. The vision in case A shattered glass spectacle lens in sport causing
4, a schoolboy aged 16, is permanently and severely serious eye injury may have possible medicolegal
reduced.                                               implications to the spectacle prescriber as well as
   None of these players wore eye protection. Case 1, being a preventable cause of blindness.
who was wearing spectacles with glass lenses, was
under the false impression that they provided some players. I thankwith consultants at advice given to me by badminton
                                                       I acknowledge
                                                                        the
                                                                            gratitude the
                                                                                           the Leicester Royal Infirmary for
protection. Had he been wearing toughened, plastic allowing me to report on patients under their care.
lenses when hit he might have been spared such References
serious injury. Four patients were injured while close
to the net by a shuttlecock from the opponent's smash 1 Vinger PF. The eye and sports medicine. In: Duane TD, Jaeger
hit. This type of injury also occurs in tennis players     EA, eds. Clinical opthalmology. Philadelphia: Harper and Row,
                                                           1985; 5: Ch.45: 1-51.
who 'rush the net'."' Badminton players and coaches 2 Pashby TJ, Pashby RC, Chisholm LDJ. Eye injuries in Canadian
should be aware of this risk in aggressive doubles         hockey. Can Med Assoc J 1978; 118: 298-305.
competitions. The forward player should hold the 3 Ingram DV, Lewkonia I. Ocular hazards of playing squash
racket in front of the face while awaiting the return     rackets. Br J Ophthalmol 1973; 57: 663-6.
                                                        4 Barrell GV, Cooper PL, Elkington AR, MacFadyen JM, Powell
stroke, particularly if a high lob has been delivered,    RG, Tormey P. Squash ball to eye ball: the likelihood of squash
when a smash return is probable. Eye and facial           players incurring an eye injury. Br MedJ 1981; 283: 893-5.
injuries from the shuttlecock may thus be prevented. 5 Bankes KJL. Squash rackets; a survey of eye injuries in England.
   Ocular injury rates requiring outpatient treatment     Br Med J 1985; 291: 1539.
                                                          Chandran                 hazards
in the Southampton study from shuttlecocks were in 6 OphthalmolS. Ocular757-60. of playing badminton. Br J
                                                                        1974; 58:
fact higher than the squash ball injury rates. Severer 7 Chandran S. Hyphema and badminton injuries. MedJ Malaysia
injuries requiring inpatient treatment occurred there     1972; 26: 207-10.
more often from squash.4 Badminton players can 8 Blonstein JL. Eye injuries in sport: with particular reference to
now achieve greater shuttlecock velocities by using 9 squash racketsPaupbadminton. Practitioner 1975; 215: 208-9. J
                                                          Hensley LD,
                                                                          and
                                                                                DC. A survey of badminton injuries. Br
steel framed rackets with carbon fibre shafts than        Sports Med 1979; 13: 156-60.
previously possible with the older wooden rackets 10 Seelanfruend MH, Freilich DB. Rushing the net and retinal
according to a former badminton coach (Warner J,          detachment. JAMA 1976; 235: 2723-5.
personal communication). Given these advances in 11 Millar CT. Golfing eye injuries. Am J Ophthalmol 1967; 64: 741.
racket technology and a higher outpatient injury Acceptedfor publication 31 October 1986.

				
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Description: Badminton is a ball across the net, using long-handled racket hit flat mesh side bar by a circle of feathers, cork hemisphere-shaped indoor sports. Based on the number of participants can be divided into singles and doubles. Compared to the similar nature of tennis, badminton players of the physical requirements of the not very high, but more meticulous and endurance, very suitable for Asian development. Since 1992, badminton become an Olympic Games.